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180                                     VEHDICT  ON INDIA
venieutly ignored by all those bemused liberals who are hyp-
notized by the word * India' and by the compact geographical
unity of the area in which these passions hold their sway. If they
could only come down from their clouds, and fly over the country
—as the airmen say—at "tree-top height,5 they might change
their opinion. The last Mopla rebellion at Malabar, for,
would not look very pretty in close-up, with its enormous piles of
Hindu dead, its heaps of pregnant women ripped wide open, its
burning temples, its pillage and destruction,.
These dreamers at home, who so glibly proclaim that com-
munalism is 'fostered' by the British might hesitate before spread-
ing this lie if they investigated conditions on, the spot. The cause
of the last serious riot in Kohat, for example, was publication, of
an anti-Islamic poem ! That little piece of literature caused the
death or serious injury of 155 men and women, nearly a million
rupees worth of damage to property, and the flight of thousands
of terror-stricken evacuees.
All over India it is the same story. A fancied slight to one of
the Hindu gods, a sneering reference to the Muslim's Allah, a
brick thrown at a religious procession, or even the impudent pipe
of a flute at the hour when the Muslim turns to Mecca—and hell
is let loose. Out come the rifles and the daggers, the pitch-forks
and the knuckle-dusters ; for weeks and months the countryside is
gripped with terror.
In the end, of course, it is always settled by a handful of British
boys, like the platoon of 25 men of the Royal Sussex Regiment
who recently dispersed a crowd of 25,000 fanatics at Karachi.
This seething mob had gathered to avenge the execution of the
Muslim murderer of a Hindu who had insulted Islam. They were
on their way to the heart of the city, to pillage, loot, and murder.
The police had already been overwhelmed, so the British boys
were called in. They were ordered to fire ; 47 people were killed;
and, of course, the Congress screamed to high heaven that this
was another example of the tyranny of * Imperial might.'
One boy per thousand religious fanatics—'Imperial might'—
that's'pretty good, when you think it out.          *
The evidence of Hindu-Muslim hatred at murder heat is so
overwhelming, so universal, and above all, so contemporary that it